Young Achiever: Lydia Olawaiye
By Adam Smeltz
Published: Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
School: Senior at Quaker Valley High School
Family: Parents, Alexander and Adefunke Olawaiye; sisters, Joyce, 5, and Hannah, 3; brother, Steven, 13
Background: Born in England, Olawaiye moved to the United States with her family when she was 4. They lived in Buffalo, N.Y., and Boston before moving to Southwestern Pennsylvania in 2008. A soccer player and a member of her school's Spanish club, Olawaiye plans to enroll in a four-year college and prepare to pursue a medical degree.
Noteworthy: Olawaiye is a semifinalist in the 2014 National Achievement Scholarship Program, an academic competition for black students in high school. Her performance on the 2012 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test earned her the distinction, which is awarded to more than 1,600 high school seniors nationwide. She will compete for about 800 scholarship awards that collectively are worth about $2.5 million.
Quote: “In the long term, I hope to be able to reach out eventually to my home country (Nigeria, where her family is from) because health care is really not the best there. I hope that with a medical degree, I'll be able to improve conditions there.”
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